Sunday, May 8, 2011

Shopping, Vegemite, Mother's Day, and Accents

1. Had Australia related dreams.  I walk alone inside a fairly crowded touristy shopping area in Australia.  There's rows and rows of generic jewelry, hair trinkets, and other things.    I think about the year 1997 (The Magic is Might Experience time period).  I wonder if any of the people around me are Australian, and am figuring most of them are not.   I move to the front of the shopping center because there they have Australian souvenirs.  If I'm going to spend money, I want something Australia-related.

I end up meeting people...or having people find me.  They're very nice to me and make me feel very welcome.   We go to a shop that sells gemstones and other novelty gifts.  I consider buying a black gemstone, remembering that it might have protective qualities.   One of my new friends shows me an offensive Jesus novelty gift.  I'm not personally offended, but I don't find it too funny.

Later Tim is with us. I think we sit at a table. A man mentions Australian tea (as in the drink)  I confess that I'm not a big fan of tea.  He says the trick is to add sugar.  Sugar's the key.   We all talk about Vegemite.  Someone mentions eating Vegemite with something.  I hear bacon and Tim hears steak.  I say it doesn't sound too bad to me.    I say we once bought a jar of Vegemite, but since we use it so sparingly we didn't finish it (before the expiry date).  I say now it's easier to just eat Vegemite at a restaurant, so we don't end up with a whole jar.   Tim mentions that he's never had steak with Vegemite, and he's also never eaten peanut butter with Vegemite.   

2.  Ate waffles for Mother's Day Brunch.  Tim worked very hard to make them, and had some help from my brother-in-laws.   Then my dad bought some awesome toppings. The waffles themselves were made with eggs that came from the neighbourhood chickens. So that was nice.  

3. Got the best Mother's Day gift from Tim and Jack.  Tim found a way to get Offspring for me!!   He had to go through hell and back to do it.  I'm extremely impressed!    It's hard to explain, but it involved buying Australian iTunes gift cards.  Then he had to manage to download it without letting me know.  He tricked me into thinking he kept using my computer because he needed to do updates on my system.  He totally had me fooled.

Then Tim and Jack both made me a video montage thing. It was a bit hard to watch it without crying, but I managed.  I was just touched that they went through all that trouble. And it was a very nice video.

4. Gifted Tim with a rant on Aussie actors and how I'm tired of Americans being deprived of Aussie television and Aussie accents.   I'm so tired of Aussie actors using American accents.   It's fine every so often, because it's fun to see people being able to do an accent that's not their natural one.   But for the most part, I think Australians should stay Australian.  Why?  Because I think most Americans LIKE to hear Aussie and British accents.  

5. Started watching the second episode of Offspring.  Even though I have now obtained my holy grail, I still want more. I want Offspring to come to America, because I want other Americans to see it.  I want my sisters to watch it.   I think they'd love it. 

6. Decided I love the opening theme song to Offspring.    I'm going to see if I can find it on YouTube.    Here it is.   The lyrics are a bit provocative....open your hips to me.   But I think it's mostly referring to the fact that Nina is an obstetrician.

7. Tried to tell Tim about the plot to Offspring.   I'm not sure he was that interested; but I also think he was probably busy and distracted.   If he was bored, I can't blame him.   I'm often bored when people try to tell me about a TV show or movie.  

8. Distressed by article that says the some economic people are predicting the Aussie dollar will get up to equaling 1.70 American dollars.   Yeah...uh....if it keeps climbing like that, we won't be going to Australia for a long time.  I guess on the bright side....$1.70 sounds so awful, that now 1.07 sounds really reasonable. If it stays less than that, I'm totally ready to go.

They're saying the 1.70 thing might happen in 2014.   I wasn't planning to go to Australia then anyway.  In 2013, it's predicted to be $1.30.  Maybe 2012 it will still be okay...under 1.07.  Then what happens at 2015?  Does it go up more or start going down?

9. Decided I should ask my Australian friends to meet us in Hawaii in 2014.   It will be so cheap for Australians to go there!   It won't be that cheap for us, but cheaper than Australia.

10. Watched video that Andrew sent me.  It's promoting Melbourne as a pedestrian friendly city.   I've seen it before, but I watched it again.   It does a really good job of selling Melbourne.  It doesn't make me want to visit. It makes me want to move there.   

11. Figured out that Asher Keddie reminds me of Jennifer Aniston.   I think they have similar facial features and facial expressions.  

12. Finished watching the 2nd episode of Offspring.   I loved it.   I especially love that the episode criticized controlled parenting—letting the baby cry-it-out and forcing it to stay on a strict eating schedule.   Now the episode gave an extreme example of that type of parenting.   Cherie (Deborah Mailman) let the baby pretty much cry all day.   She refused to pick him up.   She tore him off her breast in the middle of a feeding, deciding that he had enough.   The baby cried and she stood her ground.  A less extreme form of this type of parenting might not be so insane.  

I can feel for Cheri,e because I felt the same type of confusion.   I wanted to be a good parent, and I received so many conflicting messages.   For most of the time, I followed the attachment parenting message.   Jack breastfed on demand.  He slept with us.   I held him a lot in my arms.   But there were times I'd worry that was the wrong approach, and I'd try something different.  One time I decided to Ferberize Jack.   I stuck him in the crib and let him cry...and cry...and cry.  He screamed hysterically for 45 minutes.  Finally, I picked him up.  I couldn't take it.   I think I tried it again the next day.    I taught my baby a horrible message that day.  I taught him that if you're sad, scared, and lonely; and you cry out for help, another human being might be kind enough to come over and help you.  

This is how I feel now about letting babies cry-it-out.  I imagine if an adult, I loved, became severely handicapped.  They couldn't talk anymore.  They couldn't walk.   They were completely helpless and dependent on me for when they felt hungry, thirsty, unclean, and lonely. Would I purposely let them cry, just so I could set a standard of proper behavior?    Would I let them cry so I could teach them to be self-reliant?  Would I let them cry so they could learn to self-sooth?

Think about Christopher Reeve when he was paralyzed from the neck down.  Would it have been okay for his caretakers (wife, nurses, etc.) to ignore him when he cried out for help?   I don't think so.

All caretakers have their own lives and their own needs, of course.  We can't expect them to jump up and run over every time the baby or patient cries. But I don't think it's right to purposely ignore cries.  It doesn't make much sense to me.